Week 7 Reflect: Image Sharing and Creative Commons

How do you feel about Creative Commons licensing your own content? Are you comfortable with reserving only some of your rights as a content producer?

Firstly I feel that there is a sort of “culture of collaboration” happening online, which can be seen through things such as free open source software (for example, I currently use the free to download Apache Open Office as a substitute for the Microsoft Office Suite), as well as websites such as Wikipedia, which encourage collaboration from people all over the world.

In terms of my own content, generally speaking, in the creative commons spirit, I would be happy to allow other people to use my content- to a certain extent.

For example, this weeks play activity involves posting a photo every day on either flickr or instagram (I am using instagram myself). Personally I would be happy for anyone to use those pictures for just about anything, and I probably wouldn’t even particularly mind if I wasn’t credited for the photos either.

On the other hand, a large part of the reason that I wouldn’t mind other people using these photos is that I am not expecting to sell these pictures for a profit. Once the idea of money comes into the picture, I feel creative commons can become a lot more complicated. If I was an author, for instance, and my livelihood (and reputation as an author) depended on these books I might be less inclined to allow people to use my work, especially if I was going to be then posted online for anyone to access free of charge (I imagine this would be a bit of a hot topic amongst fan fiction communities).

Essentially saying whether or not I would be comfortable only reserving some of my rights as a content producer would depend on what kind of content I was producing, and for what I wish to use the content for, as well as what others may wish to use it for. The idea of someone else taking content that I have produced and changing it does seem somewhat discomforting, however I tend to forget that Creative Commons does still leave the user with some rights, just not all of them, and that through collaboration the end product may be something different and unexpected, which could never be achieved through just one person.

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7 thoughts on “Week 7 Reflect: Image Sharing and Creative Commons

  1. You make a great point about your expectations for monetizing your own work and retaining some measure of control over your rights. But, do you feel that since there are *so* many people pushing back against copyright restrictions and releasing high-quality work for free under licenses like CC that it ultimately is devaluing the work done by professionals? How can we be expected to compete when zero-cost is the norm?

    Would we all just be better off totally restricting the use of our content and just charging for everything?

    (As a librarian, I expect the answer is ‘no’)

    • That’s the real trouble isn’t it? Having access to high quality content free of charge is pretty awesome… but it stands to reason that if someone has put hard work and expertise into content that they’d want a return on their efforts.

      Content creators could always look at new ways of funding projects such as crowdsourcing, however that has issues associated with it as well.

      It’s a hard question. If the trends continue the way they are though, people are going to come to expect more high quality content free of charge, and content producers are going to have to become creative with the ways that they make money off their work.

      • Exactly Jennifer, it is one of the issues facing CC..it is really going to get very competitive for content creators who copyright their work as a content similar to their might be free.

  2. Agree Jennifer that it would depend on the use of the images. As I mentioned in my post, I have worries about how easy all of this is to police, and how many people really understand the different licenses and how much they are protected. But I am more paranoid than many people, and I accept that! Love the format of your blog by the way!

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